With the rapid spreading of COVID-19 the last thing that West Bengal and Odisha needed was Super Cyclone Amphan wreaking havoc in the two states. West Bengal and Odisha have been devastated by the storm leaving the common people, killed, injured, and homeless. Moreover, thousands of trees have been uprooted in the gales, electricity and telephone lines brought down and houses flattened. Many of the roads were flooded and millions were left without power for days.
Cyclone Amphan Relief an initiative thought and started by a young citizen, which involves 1 min long videos from famous personalities talking about West Bengal and Odisha urging to help collect funds for the people affected by this natural calamity. So far Usha Uthup, Riya Sen, Raghu Dixit have come out with their appeal. Those who want to donate can do so following the link http://ketto.org/s?id=PK2B9RZLR
This was not the first time, Sana Ahmed, the initiator of the fundraiser was seeing a violent storm creating havoc. She had seen the destruction caused by the cyclone Aila on 26th May 2009. Her personal experiences had been so horrifying that recollections of memories from the past storm sends a chill down her spine. A teenager in 2009 she had seen the cyclone from the window of her car as she remained stranded in the parking area of a renowned building in Kolkata.
She had seen an entire iron structure collapsing on a human. The screams of that man still haunt her. The glass panes shattering from the building, the asbestos roof being blown off, hoardings and banners flying, trees uprooted and lamp posts bend such as the destruction by the cyclone Aila in the cities the villages had unimaginable destruction. Her past experiences made her estimate the amount of destruction a super cyclone could cause. She was well aware of the hardships as she was struck in her car in 2009 without food and water for 12 hours.
Cyclone Amphans aftermath left sana battered it is then that she thought of this initative and worked towards it despite the grappling network issues she left no stone unturned in trying to approach the celebrities. Later on her friend Ronaldo Anthony joined her to support and spread the news about the initiate on social media platforms. The funds collected will be donated to- Dhagagia Social Welfare (DSWS) – Sundarbans www.dswsociety.org Alternative for rural movement – Odisha www.armngo.com Kajla Jan Kalyan samiti- Medinapur www.kjksindia.org.in
The amount collected will be divided equally among the aforementioned 3 NGOs who are working towards providing the families with Ration distribution Tarpaulin distribution Nutrition food distribution to the pregnant and lactating mothers Hygiene materials distribution Learning materials distribution Shelter repairing Shelter construction Livelihood promotion Solar medical supplies etc. There is a desperate lack of funding for smaller, grass-roots organizations’. They need support and exposure. This fundraiser will not only provide them with the support and exposure but also will give the unfortunate a reason to smile.
She has been in the shoes of the victims of the cyclone. Her empathy towards the needy has made her take this step. Let’s all remember that all the experiences we have in life help us to become better versions of ourselves and also help in the betterment of society. Let her example be a source of inspiration for us so that we all can utilize our past experiences for something productive and beneficial for both us and the people around us.